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5 Hot Destinations for 2017

Do you keep drifting off at work to dream about far-off places, adventures yet to be had, and friends just waiting to be met?

Me too.

And as I’ve been doing so, articles form a continuous, tantalizing stream across my screen depicting the myriad of places in this world just itching for me to explore them.

While watching this trail of wanderlust-enducing ants I’ve noticed a few destinations that are the hotspots to visit right now.

Use this list and get on it before these incredible places get too trampled by the feet of people who aren’t you!

1. CUBA

Once up on a time the US had a big cigar up its bum about Cuba. Thanks to the natural passage of time, in addition to some of the great work done by Barack Obama, Cuba is exploding in popularity now that it offers 12 types of Visas for Americans.

From classic cars to all night dance parties in caves, Cuba has some of the most diverse fun you’ll ever have on a tropical island.

Affordable and friendly, Cuba’s place on the Bucket Lists of many is becoming ever easier to check off.

AirBnB is now in Cuba and rooms range from less than a capuccino to whole homes positioned in Caribbean perfection right on the beach. The island is bigger than you think so when planning a trip, do your research and take travel times into account.

For divers, Cuba is a warm water wonderland. Due to the trickle of divers breathing below its surface, the waters surrounding the island are less tourist-tainted than many of the other islands in the Caribbean. Additionally, the SCUBA industry in Cuba is small and well-regulated to preserve the magical sites hidden beneath their turquoise waves.

2. BHUTAN

Tiny Bhutan has been heralded numerous times as the happiest place on earth. Yes, it’s true, the people have little but love much and live with all their hearts. Welcoming and kind, the Bhutanese have embraced tourism and Visas are now easier than ever to obtain, no matter your citizenship.

Bhutan, Thimphu, Zilukha junior High school

 

3. SRI LANKA

From expansive tea fields and vistas of photographers’ daydreams, Sri Lanka is quickly moving up the ‘must go’ list of travelers from around the world.

Affordable and adventurous, Sri Lanka is rich in culture, food, art, and of course, nature. Sri Lanka is a relatively small island, its landmass measuring just 65,610 square kilometers off the coast of the southern tip of India. The small nation is home to eleven universities and 92% of people living in Sri Lanka are literate meaning they hold the highest literacy rate in South Asia.

Sri Lankans are passionate sportspeople, holding their own on the world stage with Cricket yet proudly heralding volleyball as the national sport. As an island nation, surfing is also perpetually on the menu and incredible breaks can be found off the coast.

Climbing Mount Sigiriya, sampling curries, experiencing the tea fields and the incredible work of Dilmah and the Merrill J. Fernando Charitable Trust, releasing baby turtles and visiting elephant orphanages are just some of the things making Sri Lanka one of 2017’s hottest travel draws.

 

4. GUATEMALA

Nestled between Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador and the Pacific Ocean, the friendly, artistic Republic of Guatemala is finally coming into its own with adventurers winging in to experience its picturesque waterfalls, intricate arts and crafts, rich Mayan heritage and flavoursome food.

Guatemala was once the site of an expansive Mayan civilization until Spanish conquistadors ran it through in the 1500’s. Today, the country is welcoming its new place in the world’s best-loved destinations to relax, unwind, experience the outdoors, hike, swim, climb, and even practice yoga and meditation on the shores of Lake Atitlan.

Boasting some of the highest altitude late diving in the world, Lake Atitlan is also one of the only places you can submerge into warm (and in places – HOT) water thanks to fissure warm enough to cook an egg in the hot mud over volcanic vents.

Cave systems welcome spelunkers with enough courage (and please, experience), the beer is cheap and the food is muy delicioso!

 

5. ICELAND

As Iceland’s popularity with film crews has grown over the past decade, so too has it’s annual tourism numbers. Moreover, Iceland Air has launched super cheap flights and encouraged stopovers in this northern outdoor playground.

Black pebble beaches, natural hotsprings, friendly locals with unique and quixotic senses of humour and fabulous arts and culture are all part of Iceland’s welcome – which is anything but chilly!

Dogsleds, the Northern Lights, and almost 24 hours of daylight in the summer… need I say more?